Synopses & Reviews
On the afternoon of January 16, 1942, three men boarded a TBD Devastator aircraft -- a low-wing, single-engine torpedo-bomber -- for an antisubmarine patrol flight. Although it was to be a relatively short flight, they became lost. When the fuel ran low, they decided to ditch into the Pacific. Before they could get their life raft to inflate, however, the plane sank beneath them, carrying most of the survival gear down with it. Thirty-four days later the raft landed on Puka Puka, a New Zealand governed atoll in the Danger Islands, having meandered 1,200 miles!
The story of the voyage, with few resources except courage and indomitable human spirit, is not only inspiring listening, but a tribute to the human species and its will to survive. The miraculous escapes, especially the passage over a killer reef and the reaching of safety only a day ahead of a typhoon, also suggest that someone was looking over them!
"The sinking of the plane was like a magician's trick. It was there and then it was gone, and there was nothing left in our big, wet, darkening world but the three of us and a piece of rubber that was not yet a raft." In 1942, three men on an antisubmarine patrol flight became lost and pitched into the Pacific. The plane sank beneath them, carrying most of the survival gear down with it. For thirty-four scorching days and shivering nights, they faced the ocean terrors on a four-by-eight-foot rubber raft. They had no water, food, compass, or paddles--only their will to survive. But by feats of super endurance, they made their way to the South Sea isle of Puka Puka, having meandered 1,200 miles.